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Georgie Learns About Germ-Busting

Georgie with parents.
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Hi. I'm Georgie.

This week my school sent a note home. It said that there are germs going around, and we should be careful so we don't get sick or make someone else sick.

I had a bunch of questions. Like, what are germs? How can you be careful of them? What happens if you have a germ? And can you see germs?

Georgie and Dad call Aunt Chris on a cellphone.
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My dad said, "Georgie, you ask very good questions. I just don't know all the answers! I think your Aunt Chris can help. Let's call her."

My aunt is a scientist. She knows a lot about germs.

Georgie and Aunt Chris talk to each other on their phones.
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Aunt Chris was happy I called. She told me that germs are things that can make you sick. They are so small that you can't see them unless you have special scientist tools. She told me that there are different types of germs. And I learned that the germs at school are probably something called a virus or a bacteria.

Aunt Chris said that when people get close to each other, it's easy to share germs.

Georgie thinks about his grandma and Arthur who is using an inhaler.
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I learned that when people get sick from germs, they usually feel like they have a cold or the stomach flu. Those people can stay home and rest to get better.

But there are some people that germs can make extra sick. Like my grandma, because she's older. And my friend Arthur, because he has asthma. That made me feel worried.

Doctors and nurses, some in face masks.
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My aunt told me not to worry. She said that if people need help when they're sick, doctors and nurses can take care of them. She told me that kids can help too! That made me happy, because I like to be a helper.

"Georgie," she said, "your job is to be a germ-buster."

Here's how I bust germs:

Washing the palms and backs of hands, the thumbs, between fingers, and under fingernails.
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I wash my hands with lots of bubbles. I scrub both sides, between my fingers, and under my nails. And I sing "Happy Birthday" twice while I do it.

That's how I know I'm scrubbing long enough to kill germs.

Georgie sneezes into inner elbow.
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If I cough or sneeze, I catch it in my elbow, like this! That stops germs from flying into the air. And it keeps them off my hands too.

Georgie wears a bug mask.
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I try really hard not to touch my face, because germs can get into my body through my eyes, nose, and mouth. But it's not an easy thing to remember!

Sometimes at home I put on my bug mask for a little while to help remind me. It stops my hands if I try to scratch my nose or rub my eyes. And it makes my parents laugh when they see me.

Georgie, after getting a shot, wears a superhero cape and holds up right arm with a bandage strip on it.
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I get the shots I need to help me stay healthy.

My aunt told me that shots teach my body how to spot bad germs. Then my body can bust them FOR me. That sounds like having a superpower! So even though shots aren't very fun, I know they help keep me and the people around me safe.

Georgie and Mom have a video dance party with Arthur.
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If I am sick, I stay home so that I don't give my germs to other people. Last night I had a fever, so today I didn't go to Arthur's house to play. Instead, we had a video dance party! That was fun.

At first I was a little sad about staying home. But then I remembered that it was helping Arthur stay healthy. That made me feel good.

Georgie at a whiteboard invites you to add your ideas.
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Now that you know what Georgie does to be a germ-buster, what kinds of things can you do? Do you have ideas about how to keep your hands away from your face? How can you remember to wash your hands?

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